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Is Nice nice? (Threads merged)

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by JasperBoy, Jan 22, 2011.

  1. JasperBoy

    JasperBoy Aging in a great place

    Well, I know the city is. How about the arena?

    I am thinking about going to the Worlds in Nice in 2012. Can anyone tell me what the rink is like? I have heard about problems in some European rinks and wonder if Nice's area has any quirks. ie, seats with no backs, open sides, etc.

  2. sk8pics

    sk8pics Well-Known Member

    I was at Worlds in Nice in 2000 and had a fabulous time. The practice arena was literally across the street from the main arena, and the main arena was in between the two official hotels. All very convenient. I recall that there was some bleacher seating on the long sides of the rink that actually extended past the ice surface, so if you were sitting there, you couldn't really see well at all. It struck me as kind of small in terms of the number of seats available, but that was a long time ago so maybe my memory is faulty. The seats in the middle of the long side of the rink were great and there weren't really that many rows so all those seats had a great view. But that was the year they moved Worlds at the last minute, so they may have thrown this all together very fast, and so it may not be representative of how it will be now.

    I loved Nice and would go back there in a heartbeat. Great food, great wine, the weather was great because it was a couple weeks later than usual due to the last minute switch. I didn't realize Worlds was there next year! Hmnnn.... I'll have to think about this.
    RunnersHigh and (deleted member) like this.
  3. victorskid

    victorskid Skating supporter

    The last time Worlds was in Nice, they didn't actually use an arena for the competition. They put an ice surface and bleachers into a conference/convention centre or some such location.

    Who knows what they are planning for 2012 when, as noted above, they have had a little more lead time to prepare.

    By the way, some of my friends who attended were really not impressed with the location, the nasty ushers who would only let them into their assigned seating area (even if they were just trying to go to speak to a friend between events), or the behaviour of the "who's who" in the "special seats" who came and went during the competition with lots of kissing and huggng and no concern about the skaters on the ice or the other spectators.
  4. Aaron W

    Aaron W Well-Known Member

    I wasn't at Worlds in 2000, but I did visit Nice the year before and very much enjoyed the city. Having said that, I do remember some complaints regarding the seating arrangement at the World Championships. IIRC, people sitting in certain sections in the corner areas had seating that wasn't exactly angled toward the ice surface, making for a less than pleasant viewing experience. I believe 2012 Worlds is being held in the same venue as 2000, though the name is now Palais des Congrès Acropolis. Maybe over the past decade the venue has invested in a better seating arrangement? Nice has a tram line now that has a stop near the venue, so it's possible to get a hotel closer to the beach and just hop on the tram to the venue.
    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  5. sk8pics

    sk8pics Well-Known Member

    Oh, yes, that's right, it was temporary ice. Perhaps they will do a better job next time with more notice. I actually had no problems with the ushers at all, and we did move around.

    We stayed at a hotel about a half mile away, maybe 3/4 of a mile, and walked back and forth each day. It was no problem at all, and our hotel was right near the beach, IIRC.
  6. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

    I didn't attend Worlds 2000, but I can't think of a better place to have Worlds in March than the South of France. I'm jealous to all of those people who'll get to go.
  7. JasperBoy

    JasperBoy Aging in a great place

    Thanks for the input.

    Is the Novotel the closest to the arena?
  8. cholla

    cholla Fearless musher

    AFAIR there are 3 different Novotels in Nice. One is right across the Palais des Congrès, must be "Novotel Nice Centre". I stayed there last time I attended "Coupe de Nice". (Which is/was held at the regular small arena on top of a several floors indoor parking). The 2 others (Cap something and Arena) are close to the airport, i.e. not in the immediate proximity of the main venue. You can check www.accorhotel.com for details.
  9. WayCon

    WayCon New Member

  10. smurfy

    smurfy Well-Known Member

    Like others said, 2000 Worlds was one time setup. Very few bathrooms. But I met the Australian Ice Dancers the following year at 2001 Worlds and they said the facilities for the skaters in Nice was horrendous!

    Nice is nice place for touristy stuff. I loved going in the morning and finding a nice cafe along the sea for breakfast. Day trip to Cannes or Monaco are easy, plus many other places.
    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  11. marion853

    marion853 New Member


    I agree with the above statements. The facility was the convention centre. We had what we thought were front row seats but then there was a walkway and about 3 rows of "VIP" seats in front of us and as mentioned they came and went whenever they felt like it, stood around talking to each other and had absolutely no regard for the skaters or the spectators.

    My travel agent has indicted that she has been unable to obtain any information from the French Federation (are we surprised) and so we have no idea if it is the same venue or somewhere new.

    Our Hotel was about a 20 minute walk but the weather was very nice in Nice so it was great exercise every day. Nice is a lovely city with lots of nice spots to see quite nearby.
  12. barbk

    barbk Well-Known Member

    I'm not surprised that Australian ice dancers weren't impressed -- this was the Worlds that was taken away from Brisbane after it had been awarded, leaving many hard feelings all around. (And many spectators out money for arrangements that had to be undone.)
  13. smurfy

    smurfy Well-Known Member

    I can see that. But when I met the Aussies, they were very pleasant and kind, and did not sense that is what they meant. They mention specifics about number of bathrooms type of things and disorganization. More factual, they were not complaining.
    I never bought any food in the arena, as they were either out of food, or lines were long. They ran out of memorbilia (sweatshirts). I am not criticizing, but it was obvious it was put together quite quickly.
    As long as an event is being held in a 'regular' type arena, I would think Nice would be a nice place to go!
  14. JasperBoy

    JasperBoy Aging in a great place

    Thanks to everyone who has contributed.

    I find it hard enough to spend a week sitting in a comfortable arena. If there are problems with the facilities I will be in agony. Better to know now and pass up on the opportunity than to spend the money and regret it.

    The one-way flight alone would be about 14 hours air time.
  15. halfloopy

    halfloopy Active Member

    Nice is a beautiful area and if you have the time while there find time to take the train to Monaco which is a short distance away. It is an easy half-day trip. Although it is a seaside resort, it does not have nice sandy beaches like we think of elsewhere. They are rocky pebble beaches that are really uncomfortable to walk on. The arena in 2000 was dreadful, thrown together in a convention center at the last minute. A I recall, there was one skater who was assaulted while there (knife attack, IIRC?)

    Hopefully they will do better this time. The building was old and falling apart and did not have enough bathrooms. The staff was unpleasant. The smell of marijuana was often present and many people had things stollen, most likely by the staff. Do not leave anything unattended because it will dissappear inside and outside the area. The city is notorious for pickpockets and the mafia runs he city. Nice was once part of Italy, and basically they are northern Italians that speak french and there are strong ties to the crime organizations in Italy. At the airport and the bus station watch your things like a hawk.

    If you go you can have a fine time of it, just plan carefully and be careful while there. Also, bring lots of money! In 2000 everything was very expensive and today, the dollar is so much weaker it will be even worse. Avoid taxis, they cost a fortune.
  16. Libertango

    Libertango New Member

    Just heard on the french broadcast of Europeans that Worlds might not be held in Nice but in another French city: Montpellier :shuffle:
    jtpc and (deleted member) like this.
  17. victorskid

    victorskid Skating supporter

    Are there proper arena facilities (rather than a temporary ice surface) plus adequate hotels in Montpellier?
  18. skatak

    skatak Well-Known Member

    I heard the same from Annick Dumont.
    Montpellier's rink was rebuilt a few years ago.
  19. Nmsis

    Nmsis Well-Known Member

    Actually, a few days ago, I was thinking that Montpellier would be a far better choice to receive the World Championships as a brand new arena (France has a real deficit in arenas ; Montpellier's is the first one of a new program) has been opened there a few months ago. That's probably why the FFSG has considered moving. The rythmic gymnastic world championships will be held there in September.
    And the local rink is just 2 km away from the arena.

    There shouldn't be any trouble with accomodation. Montpellier is a mediterranean city. It is used to receive A LOT of holiday-makers in the summer. I doubt a world championship of anything would be a trouble (except during the summer).
    The arena is a bit outside of the city, like 5 km away from the city center, very close to the airport, close to the ponds, 2 km away from the beach.
    A few kilometers away from the Parc National of Camargue, Sète, Nîmes, the Saintes Maries (it's a pilgrimage center for the gypsies), Arles.
    The weather, the sea, the wild ponds, the bulls, the horses, the gardians, the food. :swoon:
    Average temperature in March : 11.5°C. Montpellier is one of the most sunny cities in France, just behind Nice. People live mostly outdoors there.

    Nice is posh and international.
    Montpellier is something completly different, very mediterranean, and if I had to chose between Montpellier and Nice to go on holliday (or even to live), I'd take Montpellier any time. It's nice, very lively and the quality of life is top notch.
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2011
  20. Moka-Ananas

    Moka-Ananas Man's Ruin

    I'm thinking about going. Probably as a volunteer.
    South France is wonderful, we used to have an appartment there and spent all our holidays there for a few years. Would be great to be back.
  21. lexeoe

    lexeoe Active Member

    i wonder if they will be using acropolis convention center for worlds 2012? it was the host arena for 2000.
  22. Nekatiivi

    Nekatiivi Well-Known Member

    I would really like Montpellier! I think I will attend with my mom. It would be the first Worlds for both of us! :swoon:
  23. JasperBoy

    JasperBoy Aging in a great place

    Wow! That's a surprise. I had no idea that the venue might change. Montpelier sounds like a much better arena for spectators.
  24. lurvylurker

    lurvylurker Active Member

    Excuse my geographic ignorance, but I assume Montpelier is somewhat close to Nice? How difficult would it be to get there?
  25. sus2850

    sus2850 Well-Known Member

    It's not close, Montpellier is somewhere else completely, about 200 miles away from Nice. You might want to look at google maps?
    Anyway, if worlds is held there, it would be lovely, I think. Montpellier is a great city & has an international airport, so it should be no problem getting there. And it should be less expensive than Nice.
  26. sk8pics

    sk8pics Well-Known Member

    What about getting around in Montpelier? To and from the rink and hotels for example? Is there public transportation? Or should you have a car?
  27. Nekatiivi

    Nekatiivi Well-Known Member

    I have traveled trough Europe and public transportation was good everywhere. If the arena is not in the center of the city it might make the thinks a bit more complicated thought.
  28. cholla

    cholla Fearless musher

    IMO Montpellier would be a much better choice than Nice... No sure it would be much cheaper though, as it's bout as touristic. But it's surely a much more welcoming and friendly city. [But OK, I'm not too fond o French Riviera...]
  29. Squibble

    Squibble New Member

    Actually, Montpelier is in Vermont. Montpellier, on the other hand, is about 200 miles west of Nice. ;)
  30. Aaron W

    Aaron W Well-Known Member

    Montpellier has two tram lines and a third one under construction. From what I've been able to gather, the line currently under construction will have a stop at Parc des Expositions, which is where the new arena has been built. They're scheduled to begin testing the line in January 2012 and commence service sometime in the spring or summer. Obviously having it in service by late March would be preferable for skating fans.